9 May 2006

Niue's premier says people well informed about plans to log forest

8:40 pm on 9 May 2006

Niue's Premier, Young Vivian, is rejecting claims that the island's community have not been kept informed about a deal with a Malaysian company to log the island's forest.

The Opposition claims the public was only informed days ago, but Mr Vivian says discussions about whether to harvest the forest, which covers much of the island, have been going on for several years.

He says they have been speaking with land owners about the plans to bring in the Malaysian company but have yet to get them to agree to the scheme.

"If they want it they have to get their land in order. That's a very big problem, because there are people, who, while owners are in New Zealand, Australia and even America. So it is going to be a long haul in terms of getting"

the ownership before they can cut the timber.